President Yoweri Museveni, who is also the NRM Presidential flag bearer has concluded his scientific campaigns in Bugisu sub-region.
During the President’s Bugisu leg of the campaign trail, he opened a 50-megawatt mobile power station at the Sino-Mbale Industrial Park and officiated at the groundbreaking ceremony for the upgrade of the 92 km Muyembe-Nakapiripirit road to link Uganda to Kenya, South Sudan and Ethiopia on top of scientific meetings with youths and other NRM Party leaders in the sub-region.
Speaking to NRM leaders from Sironko and Bulambuli districts at Masaba SS in Sironko district, the NRM presidential candidate said that sectarianism had caused almost all problems for Uganda before 1986.
“We had a lot of problems because of tribal conflicts in Uganda and Africa at large. During colonial time, we had some peace but it was not total. The situation was like that until 1986 when we took over power and by then we had got 9 governments in 25 years,” Museveni said.
“It was the same situation in the whole of Africa. The continent had stagnated despite being a rich part of the world. Uganda had become part of that club of failure. By 1986 Uganda was 4th biggest exporter of refugees in the whole world after Afghanistan, Ethiopia and Sudan.”
The President said that instead of copying people from other parts of the world, in Uganda, political parties were formed on either tribal or religious line and this way, he said they would not hold power for long.
“As society develops, people shift from identity to interests. Whereas here we were having political parties for Catholics, protestants and Baganda, in the UK they had a labour party. All people working and depending on salaries in England and Ireland supported the Labour Party. On the other side, the Conservative Party was for the employers.”
The President said that because of interests, Labour Party was formed to bargain for better conditions for workers, adding that this was not the case with Uganda where instead of interests, people looked at tribe and religion.
According to Museveni, diving people according to sectarian lines of tribes and religions ensured Uganda lagged and could not unite for development and stability.
“We realised it was very dangerous. Why abuse people emphasizing who they are yet they have common needs. Why not emphasize that? That’s how we started a new line.”
The NRM presidential candidate noted that when they captured power, they changed this line of thinking to ensure people are brought together according to their interests and that consequently, the NRM was able to capture Power and introduce the system to Ugandans.
He noted that because of the unity brought, a strong army was created, political stability and later development of the country.
“We were able to attract rich foreigners who started factories here that pay taxes and create jobs. Many foreigners come because of this. They come to make money for their own but we also get money out of them.”
He cited an example of Mbale Industrial park that he said is sitting on only 619 acres but will create 200,000 jobs.
The President, however, noted that this success story should be told to the electorates by the NRM leaders as they canvass votes.
“NRM should now tell people that because of these actions, we have achieved a lot. We now have enough money and what we need now is distributing resources well. That is why you should elect MPs who will help in the good distribution of the resources.”
Museveni, however, asked NRM leaders to tell people to now focus on working for both their stomachs and pockets.
“I have been challenging leaders especially MPs to go parish by parish, do a census and find how many people are working for their stomachs and begin to plan for them. There is a need to wake up people to start working for their pockets. We cant only depend on rich foreigners but our own people must also wake up to become part of the rich group.”
The President said the government will put more funds in programs like Emyooga, Operation Wealth Creation and youth fund to help people create incomes.
The NRM presidential flag bearer will tomorrow start his campaign trail in Sebei sub-region.